I work in a bit of a niche field. I work for the government but there aren’t a lot of folks who do what I do. It’s good and bad in that if a city needs someone to do my job, they have a limited number of folks to choose from. If there is an opening, I’d have to mess up an interview pretty badly not to get it. It’s bad in that I don’t have a lot of opportunities to choose from and I’m somewhat limited to large cities.
An opportunity popped up in San Antonio this week. My husband has been desperate to get out of California for a while. He’s been asking if I’d consider a move to Texas. The best we can afford right now is 1,200 sq ft and we have four kids who aren’t getting any smaller.
I love my state. I love the weather.
I hate the taxes. I hate the crazy cost of living. I hate the insanely restrictive policies. I hate the politics.
I also worry about my kids being able to live here long term. When a starter home is over half a million in 2020, why would anyone stay? In 15 years, what crazy price will they have to pay to stay here?
We hopped on a plane and flew to Texas over the weekend. We masked up and drove all over the city. We drove through neighborhoods and by houses to see what we could afford. I was shocked to find out we could nearly pay cash for a new house in San Antonio. We could move and be completely debt free – mortgage and all. My dream.
We drove by campgrounds. We walked through parks. We drove hours and hours. We hiked 14 miles. We saw a handful of people. We haven’t hiked in California for a couple months on our favorite trails because there are simply too many people and we feel it’s not particularly safe. It felt good to be outside.
There’s an offer on the table. 20% more than I’m making. Lower cost of living and I’d be making 20% more. By the end of the weekend, I was ready to move.
I cried the whole flight home. It’d a hard decision. We would have no family in the area. My sister in Kansas would be the closest and it’d take ten hours by car to get to her. My husband’s parents and my parents live 30 minutes from our home in San Diego. My brother lives walking distance from me right now. My sister is 20 minutes away.
Am I willing to leave all that because my house is small?
I called my sister. She moved to Kansas 15 years ago. I asked if she had regrets. “Do you ever wish you stayed here?”
“I’d never come back. This is where I feel at home. I was never really ‘California’. It never felt right. I was always the square peg in the round hole. If I need California weather, I visit. But Kansas is home.”
She bloomed in the place that felt right.
Have you made a big move from family? Do you have regrets?